Interswitch Group says it is set to commence the second edition of its National Science Competition, tagged: “InterswitchSPAK”.
The Group Head, Brand of Interswitch, Mrs Eyioma Anaba, said at a news conference on Wednesday in Lagos, that the competition would start with a national qualifying examination from which 81 finalists would emerge.
Anaba said the competition was aimed at driving increased interest in the study of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects among senior secondary school students.
She said after the examinations, the finalists would compete at the InterswitchSPAK television quiz, which would include masterclass programme and innovation challenge, all centred around STEM.
Anaba said the overall winner would be awarded a five-year scholarship in any tertiary institution.
According to her, the overall winner will also receive a lap top, a gold trophy and monthly stipend throughout the duration of the scholarship, all totalling N7.5 million.
She encouraged all eligible students, both private and public, to participate and register for the competition.
Anaba said that the importance of STEM could not be over emphasised in the society, considering the current societal challenges.
She said the competition would encourage and guide the students along career paths to help them achieve full optimisation of their potential and dreams to become inventors and entrepreneurs.
Speaking on the registration, Anaba explained that it was open to girls and boys in both public and private schools in the country, aged between 14 and 17 years.
She said that new schools were required to first register on the InterswitchSPAK platform before registering their students, while returning schools could directly register their students.
Anaba noted that each school was expected to register six students each, of which two must at least be girls.
The acting Registrar, National Examinations Council (NECO), Alhaji Abubakar Gana, commended the initiative, saying it was a good way to sustain senior secondary students interest in STEM education.
Gana said that teachers, parents, Ministeries of Education and other stakeholders have a great role to play in sustaining the laudable project for the good of the nation.
According to him, it is expected that if these young Nigerians are given enough motivation, the STEM education will be adequately achieved.
Akachukwu Anumundu, a student of the Apostolic Faith Secondary School, Lagos, and winner of the 2018 edition of the competition, commended the Interswitch Group for the gesture.
Anumundu, while recounting his experiences, said that it was an eye opener for him.